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Feds move to seize land in Oregon medical marijuana cases

Mail Tribune, Medford, Oregon by Mark Freeman

The federal government is attempting to take possession of two Applegate Valley properties allegedly used by the High Hopes Farm to grow marijuana under the state’s medical-marijuana program but in violation of federal laws banning cannabis cultivation.

Federal prosecutors Wednesday filed court papers in U.S. District Court in Portland to launch a forfeiture case against the land where James Bowman grew High Hopes marijuana, even though Bowman doesn’t own the properties and has not been charged with a crime.

The registered owner of the five-acre High Hopes Farm property at 700 Upper Applegate Road is Melissa Jean Yager, who federal Drug Enforcement Administration agents believe is Bowman’s live-in girlfriend, court filings state.

Bowman and Yager list the property as their residence, according to federal agents.

The nearby 156-acre property at 746 Upper Applegate Road tapped for seizure is owned by William Day Boddorff, who rented a small piece of the property to Bowman for marijuana cultivation at $2,000 a month, a DEA affidavit states.

Boddorff told DEA agents that Bowman told Boddorff not to worry about facing federal seizure because he was following “the letter of the law” of Oregon’s Medical Marijuana Program, the affidavit states.

The High Hopes Farm was listed in court papers as containing a nearly 1,300-square-foot, double-wide trailer on it. The Jackson County Assessor’s Office lists the property’s current market value at $173,350.

The property at 746 Upper Applegate Road has two residences, along with a single-wide manufactured home and outbuildings. The assessor’s office lists its current value at $1.27 million.

Both properties were raided Sept. 18 by DEA agents.

Agents seized 601 marijuana plants and about 400 pounds of dried marijuana from High Hopes Farm, though OMMP rules state the property could grow no more than about 400 plants under the program, court filings state.

Agents pulled 206 plants and seized an unspecified amount of dried marijuana from Boddorff’s property, which OMMP records state is a registered grow site for up to 354 mature plants, according to an affidavit.

The DEA also disclosed in affidavits that High Hopes Farm has been under surveillance since 2008, with agents taking aerial photographs to identify and count what they believed to be mature marijuana plants growing at the farm.

Agents in July 2010 even used Google Earth satellite-imagery of the farm to identify and count what agents believed were marijuana plants growing there, the affidavit states. Agents also conducted aerial surveillance of both properties in July and again Aug. 29 in preparation of the federal search warrant that led to the Sept. 18 raid, the affidavit states.

Federal laws spell out a process for the government to seek forfeiture of properties involving crimes even without anyone being formally charged with a federal crime.

Bowman, who did time in federal prison for growing marijuana in the 1990s — before Oregon voters made medical marijuana legal — has been an outspoken advocate for legalization, even inviting local lawmakers to his farm in 2011.

Boddorff did not return a telephone call Thursday seeking comment. A telephone number for Yager listed in court filings was disconnected. Bowman could not be located for comment.

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8 Responses to Feds move to seize land in Oregon medical marijuana cases

  1. diggerdan says:

    Yep, I have had some heated arguments about that law in – was it arizona that just legalized herb for recreational use – just because it is approved for use by the state that the Feds can come in and destroy every thing and put ya under federal arrest. Well they are doing it. FEMA CAMP ANYONE? The state and the feds. sleep in the same f#@kin bed together – they work together with the same agendas in mind. The fed. bastards can go rot in hell and I mean ROT IN HELL YOU FED. BASTARDS. F**k YOU FEDERAL EMPLOYESE AT EVERY LEVEL!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! ROT IN HADES . Die a long slow painful death each and every one of you bastards!

    • tribeseeker says:

      Certainly NOT Arizona that you’re talking about. They legalized medical marijuana last year but that’s as far as that goes. Colorado and Washington State were the 2 that legalized recreational use.

      • diggerdan says:

        I have always been bad with names ya know tribseeker. I would never trust a law unless it is a law the feds agree with and I realy do not trust the fed govt. much less the state govt. – and that would mean that all 50 states would legalize it I guess eh.

  2. REDHORSE says:

    Federal laws spell out a process for the government to seek forfeiture of properties involving crimes even without anyone being formally charged with a federal crime.
    It would seem the fed’s needed some more land for another HAARP or something and as they are broke, shazam.Take take take,this needs to stop.

    • Marvin says:

      The federal “laws” may say such but they carry zero legal authority since the federal government has no authority to be involved in such matters. The federal laws are no more valid than if I issued a “law” stating that everyone had to pay me $100 dollars. If the US constitution does not grant the authority to the feds to make drug laws then the feds lack any such authority. Go read the US constitution for yourself.

      It is time that the voters of Oregon start electing a legislature and an AG who understand how our legal system works. It is time that Oregon and other states elect leaders who are not limp-wristed pantywaists who will be willing to stop the illegal federal encroachment on state’s rights.

      Remember that the sovereign states brought the federal government into this world and they can also take it out.

  3. Marvin says:

    I think that the owner of the land should file suit against the State of Oregon for not defending him against federal aggression. Various taxes have been paid by the land owner and part of that money is supposed to be used to protect the owner from such illegal aggression.T he land is NOT being used in any illegal way, all federal “laws” regarding intrastate drug use manufacture and posession are void since the US constitution never grants any authority to the feds to be involved in any such activity. Under the US constitution and numerous US Supreme Court rulings, the feds are completely out of line and the Oregon State Patrol should arrest all federal law enforcement officers and the federal prosecutor involved in this case on criminal fraud charges. Any physical resistance from the feds should be met with lethal force. After a few hundred federal prosecutors and US Marshals have been incarcerated or killed, I bet the feds would have second thoughts about trying to throw around their weight.

    • # 1 NWO Hatr says:

      File suit? SERIOUSLY? Do you honestly believe ANYONE is going to get justice in these Maritime Law based courts?

      The court system in this country is designed to do one thing, like the IRS, and that’s to steal as much of our (fiat) money, and as many of our assets as possible.

      They’re extremely adept at it.

  4. G Street says:

    Talk about mission creep. The Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations law was for the purpose stated in its title. It was to go after members of an enterprise who committed any 2 of 35 crimes within a 10 year period. Those crimes include fraud, securities fraud, and money laundering, but no RICO has been applied to financial organizations.

    The act called for a member of the enterprise to forfeit “ill-gotten gains,” the fruits of the criminal enterprise. I don’t see how that necessarily includes the property owner. It seems to be a cruel price, meant only to warn off others in Washington and Colorado.

    The reason for immediate forfeiture was to prevent transfer of assets through shell corporations… you know, offshore money laundering like most major corporations routinely engage in now.

    The failure to apply these laws to much bigger fish that have caused much more harm makes a mockery of the law.

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